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Articles on Native Americans

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Change the Flag supporters protest on the steps of the statehouse on July 16, 2020 in Boston. Stuart Cahill/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

The Massachusetts flag glorifies the violence committed by colonizers – Native Americans want it changed

Native Americans are slowly ridding America of demeaning caricatures. It’s unclear whether Massachusetts will do the same and remake its flag that now glorifies violence committed by colonizers.
The number of people in the U.S. who identify as Native American rose from 2010 to 2020. Associated Press

How the Native American population in the US increased 87% says more about whiteness than about demographics

They’re called ‘pretendians’ – people who long identified as white but are now claiming to be Native American. In the last US Census, the number of Native Americans almost doubled because of them.
In the 19th century, there was a campaign to link the Thanksgiving holiday to the Pilgrims. Bettman/Getty Images

The first Thanksgiving is a key chapter in America’s origin story – but what happened in Virginia four months later mattered much more

The communion between Native Americans and the Pilgrims makes for a compelling narrative. But it masks the suspicions and brewing violence that were far more representative of the era.
Sign at a boat ramp on Lake Mead, near Boulder City, Nevada, Aug. 13, 2021. The lake currently is roughly two-thirds empty. AP Photo/John Locher

As climate change parches the Southwest, here’s a better way to share water from the shrinking Colorado River

A Western scholar proposes allocating water from the Colorado River based on percentages of its actual flow instead of fixed amounts that exceed what’s there – and including tribes this time.
A makeshift memorial for the Indigenous children who died more than a century ago while attending a boarding school, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan, File

‘Truth and Healing Commission’ could help Native American communities traumatized by government-run boarding schools that tried to destroy Indian culture

For Indigenous Peoples Day, a scholar of Native American studies explains why understanding the tragic history of Indian boarding schools is important for healing to take place.
A man takes a picture of a statue representing the 5,300-year-old mummy named Ötzi, discovered in the Italian Alps 30 years ago. Andrea Solero/AFP via Getty Images

What Ötzi the prehistoric iceman can teach us about the use of tattoos in ceremonial healing or religious rites

When the 5,300-year-old mummy of Ötzi the Iceman was found 30 years ago, researchers found 61 tattoos on it. A scholar explains how tattoos have been a sacred part of many cultures across the world.
In 1872, John Gast painted ‘American Progress,’ showing trains and roads spreading across the American West. John Gast, Library of Congress via Wikimedia Commons

Infrastructure spending has always involved social engineering

Government investment in roads, railroads and other public services has always involved social programming, both for good and for ill.
The Maricopa County Election Department counts ballots in Phoenix on Nov. 5, 2020. Arizona’s election laws are the subject of a pending Supreme Court decision. Olivier Touron/AFP via Getty Images

Supreme Court weighs voting rights in a pivotal Arizona case

In Brnovich v. DNC, the court will decide whether two Arizona rules unfairly hurt poor, minority and rural voters. The ruling could determine the fate of many states’ restrictive new voting laws.

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